Currency as a potential environmental vehicle for transmitting parasites among food-related workers in Alexandria, Egypt.

Abstract

Transmission of parasites may occur indirectly via inanimate objects in the surrounding environment. One of the objects most handled and exchanged by people are currency coins and banknotes, which could be one of the most potential vehicles to transmit parasites, even between countries. However, study of the potential contamination of currency in circulation with intestinal parasites has not been given the interest it deserves and the present study is the first pilot study in Alexandria, Egypt. It was revealed that 60.2% of 103 banknotes and 56.6% of 99 coins obtained from food-related workers had been contaminated with one or more parasitic species. Protozoa were the predominant parasites, with microsporidia and Cryptosporidium spp. being the most prevalent. There was no statistically significant difference between currency types regarding parasitological contamination, but there was a significant (P<0.001) association between the physical condition of currency and its contamination. Moreover, the source of the currency was not statistically associated with parasitological contamination. The denomination of coins was not statistically associated with parasitological contamination, whilst that of banknotes was with the lower denominations being more contaminated.

DOI: 10.1016/j.trstmh.2011.05.001

Cite this paper

@article{Hassan2011CurrencyAA, title={Currency as a potential environmental vehicle for transmitting parasites among food-related workers in Alexandria, Egypt.}, author={Azza Adel Hassan and Hanan Farouk and Faika I Hassanein and Rashad A. Abdul-Ghani}, journal={Transactions of the Royal Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene}, year={2011}, volume={105 9}, pages={519-24} }